Edsall: Just didn't work out
COLLEGE PARK--The first try was no good. Boston College kicker Nate Freese missed from 52 yards out, but the Maryland sideline had called a timeout just prior to the snap.
The second try did not miss. Freese hit from the same distance on the next play to give Boston College a stunning 29-26 victory at Byrd Stadium in College Park.
It appeared Boston College had settled for overtime a few plays prior, but a big 36-yard run by running back Andre Williams put the Eagles in a position to score with less than a minute remaining.
Read more below.
Boston College 29, Maryland 26
With 5:02 to play in the fourth quarter, Boston College quarterback Chase Rettig threw a 74-yard touchdown pass off a play action to give the Eagles a 26-24 lead.
On the ensuing extra point, linebacker Marcus Whitfield blocked the kick and it was snagged out of the air by safety Anthony Nixon who returned it 100 yards for two points. That tied the game at 26-26 and gave Maryland the ball back with the score even instead of a three-point deficit.
ANDRE WILLIAMS PROVES TO BE ONLY BC OFFENSE
Knowing that Boston College running back and Doak Walker Award candidate Andre Williams was at the center of the Eagles’ offensive attack, Maryland chose its battle on Saturday.
The Terrapins routinely stacked eight players in the box to combat Williams, who had 64 yards rushing on Boston College’s first drive, and limited him thereafter. In the first half, Williams rushed for 107 yards but Boston College amassed less total yards than that, 89.
His 72-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter pushed him over the 200-yard mark on the day and the 2,000-yard mark on the year. He finished with 263 yards on 32 carries.
DEFENSE COMES UP BIG IN RED ZONE
Boston College made three trips into the red zone on Saturday and converted on all three. But consider this: Due to a turnover, Boston College’s lone touchdown drive began inside Maryland’s five-yard line.
The other two conversion were both field goals and not touchdowns, which allowed a stagnant Maryland offense to keep pace.
Maryland’s defensive game plan was clear. Stop Williams and force quarterback Chase Rettig to beat them through the air. It worked. Rettig finished with 120 yards on 6-of-14 passing.
MARYLAND OFFENSE STAGNANT EARLY
The Terrapins tried for the home run early, with quarterback C.J. Brown looking deep over the middle in the direction of both Nigel King and Levern Jacobs on more than one occasion. That ultimately stalled in the first half, causing a more underneath-heavy passing attack.
On Maryland’s one touchdown-scoring driving, a turnover had set them up at the one-yard line. Not really a long, sustained drive. The Terrapins only managed a solid drive one other time in the first half, but it was stalled out by three consecutive penalties, including one that wiped out a King touchdown.